Surviving the summer while pregnant in Arizona is a feat all on its own. With temperatures rising well above 100-degrees, we are often discussing ways to stay cool and hydrated during the warm summer months. It’s rough for anyone who lives here during the summer, but to go through it pregnant is a whole different story. However, we’ve been through it year-after-year, helping expectant moms beat the heat with these tips and advice below.
If you feel light-headed, dizzy, or overheated at any point during your pregnancy call your ObGyn provider immediately. In most cases we’ll just want to make sure you’re getting enough water and staying cool. Don’t overdo it in the summer months. Try your best to take it easy, take your time, and talk to your provider about any health or heat concerns you might have.
We really can’t stress this one enough. In the summer months, we all sweat out a great portion of the liquids that we take in. However, when you’re pregnant you have an even greater possibility of sweating more liquids than you take in, so hydrate, hydrate, hydrate! Try to drink at least eight to 10 glasses of water daily or more if you spend time exercising. Sports drinks that are high in electrolytes are also great if you’re outside and sweating.
While every fellow mother will tell you that it is no fun to be pregnant during an Arizona summer, there are some perks. Relaxing by the pool is just one of those perks that you can take advantage of during the summer. In the morning or evening, when the heat is not unbearable, kick back in the pool. The water will lower your body temperature and the buoyancy will ease some of the stress on your body. The pool can also help with swelling. If you swim, remember to stop if you feel overly tired.
Another tip is to carry around a spray bottle filled with water. Spritz yourself periodically to keep cool.
Prevent Excessive Summer Swelling
Unfortunately, your odds of increased swelling during the summer months are much higher than any other time of the year. However, there are things that you can do to help avoid too much swelling. Lie down for an hour a day or kick your feet up and use a cold rag to keep your body temperature low. We highly recommend wearing comfortable, breathable and supportive shoes that are a half-size larger than your normal size. If you’d like to wear flip-flops, consider supportive ones.
Keep moving as well. Take walks, go for a swim, and keep the blood flowing to help reduce swelling. Don’t worry if you experience minor swelling while pregnant in the summer months as it is completely normal. If you’re concerned, talk to your ObGyn provider about what can be done.
Avoid Running Errands or Exercising Outdoors Mid-Day
Do what you can in the early morning hours or in the evening and stay out of the direct sunlight when possible. Avoiding direct sunlight during the hottest times of the day can greatly improve your pregnancy experience in the summer months.
If you prefer to exercise outdoors, the best time to do so is in the early morning hours or after the sun has set. This is when it’s typically coolest outside and your risk of heat exhaustion is at its lowest.
Use Sunscreen Often
Sunburns dehydrate you and can be very uncomfortable. Save yourself the trouble and apply sunscreen often.
Wear Light, Loose-Fitting, Breathable Clothing
Keep your clothing light and comfortable. Avoid tight-fitting clothes, as these can not only increase your body temperature but can increase swelling. To avoid chaffing, which is perfectly normal during pregnancy especially during the summer, choose maternity clothes that are made specifically for the summer months.
Eat Healthy Foods
Feeding yourself and your baby high quality proteins, healthy fats, and lots of fruits and vegetables will support your health as you endure the sweltering sun.
Avoid Foods That Spoil Easily
If you’re at a summer picnic, watch for dishes with easily spoiled ingredients. It’s best to avoid these foods as they can go bad quickly in the summer sun.
If you would like to meet with a knowledgeable doctor, consider contacting Women’s Health Arizona. As Arizona’s largest ObGyn group, we’re trained and solely dedicated to delivering the best ObGyn experience in convenient and comfortable settings around Phoenix.